Switching to Xero from Quickbooks for accounting

Trevor GehmanBy — Posted

* Occasionally, I like to feature software and services that we use and love here at Clearstream.

Xero is a modern, beautiful web-based accounting software that is a joy to use.

I recently wrote about our experience using Stripe for credit card payments. While it took over a year for us to make the switch to Stripe, it took only a couple weeks for us to switch from Quickbooks to Xero for our accounting software.

From the beginning, using Quickbooks was frustrating. After a difficult installation requiring phone activation, a frustratingly cumbersome remote access process, and an ongoing feeling like Quickbooks support was just a glorified sales team, we couldn’t believe that so many businesses rely on Intuit for such an important function as accounting software.

The whole experience left me with the impression that Quickbooks is a relic of a time gone by. To be honest, I have little tolerance for frustrating software. After surveying alternatives, including Sage, we stumbled upon Xero, and we’ve never looked back.

Discovering Xero made me wonder why anyone was using Quickbooks.

Here are some of the main reasons why Xero won us over:

  • Entirely web-based. I have an aversion to any data-driven software that isn’t web-based. The convenience, security and reliability of the cloud should make this an easy decision for any software company.
  • Powerful API access & third-party add-ons. Thanks to Xero’s wonderful API, we have integrated our software and billing systems to automatically generate invoices and process payments. We’ve also integrated with Stripe and Capsule. It’s completely seamless, and saves us a ton of time. Xero also has a collection of additional add-ons available.
  • Automatic bank feeds. While most accounting software pulls data from your bank accounts, including Quickbooks, we found Xero’s process of setting up and connecting to bank accounts incredibly easy.
  • Reporting, reconciling, income, expenses. It may go without saying, but just to be clear: Xero handles all of our accounting needs with ease. There may be something that Quickbooks or Sage offers that Xero doesn’t, but we have yet to find anything significant.

Xero keeps both developers and accountants happy.

One of my primary responsibilities as a developer is tracking and organizing data, of which financial data is the most important. As we’ve grown, Xero has continued to serve us well, providing great reporting and automating a myriad of tasks thanks to an open, flexible API. We wholeheartedly recommend Xero for accounting. Check them out at